Feeds the Soul

James IoeluInternational Baritone; Musical Director for St. Michael's Remuera

The art of bel canto relies on the ability of a singer to perform their lines with the utmost legato, allowing the vowels of each word to blossom without letting the consonants interrupt the flow. When I listen to Dr. Loretz’s liturgical music, it reminds me of the great singers of the past who lived and breathed the art form of beautiful singing. Their ability to sing each word with great emotion allowing the audience to be transported from their ordinary life into the imagination of the composer. Dr. Loretz has the gift of storytelling. His lyrics not only teach our Catholic faith but draw the listener into a contemplation which feeds the soul, allowing it to grow in love. His music is perfectly married to his deep theological insights, making the whole most enjoyable to sing.

St Michael’s Parish in Remuera have been using Dr Loretz’s settings of the Sunday Psalms for the past couple of years. I find that this music is simple yet reverent allowing for the congregation to deepen their understanding of Scripture. Furthermore, his hymns to Mary are especially beautiful including a parish favourite “Let Us Sing To You O Mary” set to the theme from Holst’s Jupiter.

I was excited to learn that Dr. Loretz has made his music available online. I encourage musicians and parishes to get access to this wealth of music. The Mass is where man can touch the Divine. What better way to embrace this gift than with music fitting for this miracle.

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